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The Des Moines Arts Festival® Sustainability Efforts Aim for Zero Waste

June 11, 2018

DES MOINES, IA  June 11, 2018 — The Des Moines Arts Festival® has worked steadily alongside key stakeholders since 2013 to ensure that the Festival has a minimal negative environmental impact while still delivering a world-class, award-winning event. In 2017, the Festival celebrated its best recycling and compost percentages yet for its sustainability program, which was awarded the Best Green Program by the International Festivals and Events Association (IFEA).

This year is set to be another banner year as the Festival joins forces with Voya Financial with the goal to be Zero Waste through landfill diversion.

To ensure this vision is not compromised, a Sustainability Team will be on the ground dedicated to ensuring the following plan will be implemented and carried out:

  • Seventeen custom-designed waste stations positioned throughout the Festival site, to accommodate recyclables, compostables, and landfill waste.
  • All waste is logged and accounted for, providing compressive checks and balances. These metrics allow the true, measurable accountability.
  • Vinyl banners used during the Festival are recycled and made into tote bags and other items rather than deposited in the landfill.
  • Free bike valet service provided by Friends of Central Iowa Trails encourages guests to cycle to the Festival instead of driving.
  • All generators used to power the Festival site run on a biodiesel blend.
  • Any paper correspondence is printed on recycled paper and postconsumer waste materials.
  • Food vendors are required to use compostable plates, utensils, napkins, and containers.
  • Artists and volunteers are provided designated water stations to fill reusable bottles, eliminating thousands of disposable plastic bottles.
  • Information provided to all participating vendors is delivered electronically and posted on the Festival’s website in order to eliminate paper and other non-recyclable products.
  • Other merchandise options are non-woven bags that can be reused by guests as tote bags, and reusable water bottles.
  • Beverages are sold in recyclable plastic bottles and aluminum.
  • The application process for the juried art fair is completely paperless, using an online registration, application, jury, and communications system called ZAPPlication.
  • Boy Scout Troop 111 out of Grimes assists with on-site recycling to ensure all materials are sorted and uncontaminated.

Takeaways the for anyone attending the Festival:

  • Consider taking advantage of the Friends of Central Iowa Trails free bike valet, carpooling, or taking the bus to the festival. Keep in mind how you'll transport any art you might purchase.
  • Take a moment to choose the correct receptacle for your waste and remember anything from our vendors can be composted, including cups. Bottles and cans get recycled. Follow the signs and use your best judgment for anything from off the Festival grounds, including nearby businesses.

None of this would be possible without the assistance and support of Voya Financial, Drake University, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, the Environmental Protection Agency, Silent Rivers Design+Build, and guests of the Festival.

Details can be found at desmoinesartsfestival.org/sustainability/.

About the Des Moines Arts Festival®

The eleven-time Grand Pinnacle Award-winning Des Moines Arts Festival presented by Nationwide will be held June 22-24, 2018. This free annual three-day arts and culture festival will surround the John and Mary Pappajohn Sculpture Park. DMAF invites you to “…go where it takes you…” by engaging with 180 invited professional visual artists, emerging Iowa artists, the cutting-edge Interrobang Film Festival, live music, performing arts, interactive arts activities, award-winning community outreach programs, live artist workshops and demonstrations, artisan food, and beverages for every taste.  

For more information please visit us online at www.desmoinesartsfestival.org or socialize with us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/DesMoinesArtsFestival, Twitter at @DMArtsFestival, Instagram at @desmoinesartsfestival, Pinterest at @dmartsfest, on YouTube and on LinkedIn.  #GoWhereItTakesYou #DMAF #DMAF2018 #Nationwide #MakeSafeHappen

If you’d like more information about this topic, or to schedule an interview, please call Belle Du Chene at 646-712-2196 or email Belle at bduchene@desmoinesartsfestival.org.